Friday, December 16, 2011

I recently had the pleasure of shooting for House & Home. I've been a fan of the magazine for the greater part of my life, so it's a bit of a benchmark. Below is Editor-in-Chief Suzanne Dimma with her January letter. We shot a few variations, so you'll see my handiwork in several upcoming issues.

And below that, my dear pal Ash (who regularly works with them as a Food Stylist) was featured in the Contributors section. I spent this week watching him work his magic on-set with Edward Pond, filing away styling tips and tricks like a little squirrel. (If you follow my Instagram, you've been seeing lots of behind-the-scenes.)

Monday, December 12, 2011

You've certainly heard of it. The gorgeous magazine that took the internet (and beyond) by storm earlier this year released Volume 2 today. Kinfolk.

I was bummed when I couldn't make my June deadline for the inaugural issue, watching it go out into the world without me. It went on to blow everyone's minds (including mine), its pages filled with fine, fine work from my pals Tara, Tim and Ryan and dozens of other major talents. 

Well, this time around me and my dear friend Ash put our heads together to create a few images. He's an extraordinary food stylist (his work gracing the pages of Canadian House & Home and many other publications) and a remarkable chef. This time, though, we'd create a simple pie with a story about the time before guests when the host putters about the market and the nooks and crannies of his kitchen.  We're really happy to be amongst the lovely pages of Kinfolk, and hope you'll enjoy too.

Buy the magazine here.  And enjoy some alternates and extras below, as well as Ash's Grandma's classic pie recipe. (While plums were a perfect last-days-of-Autumn sort of fruit, they might be hard to come by these days. This would work well as an apple pie, too!)

Plum Pie

2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp sugar
16 tbsp cold, salted butter, cut into pieces
½ cup of cold ice water (or enough to bring the dough together)

Add dry ingredients to the bowl of your food processor. While running, add butter and blend until it is in pea-sized bits. Add water one tablespoon at a time until dough comes together. Don’t over mix. Place out on a lightly-floured surface and form into two equal sized discs. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill until firm, at least one hour. Dough can remain in the fridge for a few days or be frozen for later use.

5 cups plums, pitted and cut into 1" slices
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1½ tbsp salted butter
2 tbsp cream

Pre-heat oven to 425°F. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough and line a 9" pie plate.

Combine the plums, sugar, lemon juice and nutmeg together in a medium bowl. Place in lined pie plate. Dot with butter.

Roll out the second disc of dough. Place on top leaving a 1"-thick border around the edge. Cut off excess. Tuck top layer of dough, underneath bottom layer and crimp or tuck the edges. Brush top with cream and cut a small air vent in the middle. Bake for 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350°F and continue baking 40-55 minutes or until crust is golden and plums are tender.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

I'm a few days behind, but I wanted to share a new playlist with you for the holiday season.  We're officially 3 weeks away (how the F did that happen?) and hearing Christmas music suddenly feels right.

There are a few repeats on this collection. Forgive me, but there are a handful of songs I go back to year after year. Every holiday season, for me, includes Peggy Lee singing "The Christmas Waltz".  Enjoy, and have the merriest of holidays.

  1. It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas - Bing Crosby
  2. Baby, It's Cold Outside - She & Him
  3. Frosty the Snowman - Fiona Apple
  4. Joy to the World - Sufjan Stevens
  5. Silver Bells - Rosemary Clooney
  6. The Christmas Waltz - Peggy Lee
  7. Winter Song - Sarah Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson
  8. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - Tori Amos
  9. Count Your Blessings (Instead of Sheep) - Bing Crosby
10. The Merriest - June Christy
11. I Wanna Hippo For Christmas - Shirley Temple
12. Jingle all the Way - Lena Horne
13. Happy Holiday - Peggy Lee
14. Warm December - Julie London
15. That's What I Want for Christmas - Nancy Wilson
16. White Christmas - Peggy Lee
17. I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm - Dean Martin
18. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Al Martino
19. Let It Snow Let it Snow Let it Snow - Wayne Newton
20. Baby, It's Cold Outside - Carmen McRae and Sammy Davis Jr.
21. River - Robert Downey Jr.
22. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - Judy Garland
23. Deck the Halls - Nat King Cole
24. Good Morning Blues - Ella Fitzgerald

(Oh, and if you don't have it already, here's last year's mix.  Enjoy!)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Since arriving home from Florida a few days ago, I've been in a funk.  November's a tough one, made moreso by icy cold rain hot on the heels of 10 days in Tropical America.  Nick, Natasha and Sofia joined us in Fort Lauderdale.  And, again, maybe it's just me being an overzleaous Guncle, but I swear she gained 5lbs and learned 18 new tricks.  She giggled, she zerberted her lips, and she rolled over (with a little help.)  She was a great houseguest and an even better model.

So, let's let this little face warm us and wrap yourself up in some moody music.

Songs for November Rain

  1. No Light, No Light - Florence and the Machine
  2. Blackout - Anna Calvi
  3. Hell of a Season - The Black Keys
  4. Night Time - The XX
  5. Avalanche - Zola Jesus
  6. Going to Hell - Kathleen Edwards
  7. Comfort Me - Feist
  8. Night After Night - Laura Marling
  9. House Full of Empty Rooms - Kathleen Edwards
10. Shelter - The XX
11. Shivers - Zola Jesus
12. Lose it - Austra
13. Pulling Teeth - The Guest Bedroom

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Recently I shot another flashy party at The Bay.  This time Nicola Formichetti and the team from Mugler descended upon our fair city (and were spotted at Gaga-favourite Remingtons) to celebrate their sexy clothes and crazy shoes.  Check out more shots at The B-Insider (as well as another great video by Chris Chilco) and on Flare Magazine's website.  

Monday, November 14, 2011

On Saturday I turned thirty.  As the youngest (almost, Hi Brian!) in my closest circle, I've been surrounded by 30-somethings for a while, tricking my brain into another decade some time.  But, now it's official.  

A handful of my dearest joined Jeff and I for dinner before heading to our apartment for a night's worth of drinking.  My friends know me well, so I got several bottles of gin, and, collectively, we did a good job disposing of them.  

A room full of good hair, great smiles and big hearts.  Thanks to my Jeff and my friends for a wonderful birthday.